Community investment
Community investment

Our privilege as a real estate owner and manager is the role we play in serving our communities, and delivering for our clients. We seek to play a meaningful role in our communities through our community investment programs and other asset-based initiatives.

Community Investment Program

To strategically align and maximise the impact of our community investment program, QIC Real Estate undertook a structured and evidencebased approach in selecting ‘physical health and wellbeing’ as the most materially relevant social theme for our portfolio-wide Community Investment Program. We believe this focus will allow us to deliver value to our communities and drive positive commercial results across our asset portfolio based on the following considerations:

  • 60% of our centres are located in areas with a relatively less active population than the national average
  • Just under half of all Australians had one or more chronic health conditions in 2017-181
  • Ability to deliver impactful programs that can make a real difference through the retail and office portfolio, rather than just awareness campaigns
  • Opportunity to align/partner with tenants
  • Can connect people, who already actively come to our assets, to enjoy and utilise our physical spaces in novel ways
  • Alignment with the growing wellness and athleisure trend
  • Alignment with QIC Real Estate's existing strengths and what it can confidently deliver. 

During FY22, QIC Real Estate put out an Expression Of Interest (EOI) to the not-for-profit community to identify an appropriate partner through which to deliver our new Community Investment program. As part of the process, Nutrition Australia and YMCA were selected as our preferred delivery partners. 

Nutrition Australia is Australia's leading nutrition not-for-profit organisation, providing information, education and business-to-business consultation and advisory services to help those who use these services achieve improved health through good nutrition. YMCA is the largest global youth movement with a shared purpose of empowering young people. In Australia, YMCA provide a wide range of programs and services to people of all ages, including activities focused on increasing physical activity, with nearly 30 million participations each year in over 500 communities. 

The joint partnership with Nutrition Australia and YMCA was selected due to their collaborative approach, their ability to reach across our asset portfolio geography, their access to existing relationships and their willingness to co-design a program with us to meet our needs. Through the partnership, we have identified a number of activities focused on introducing consumers to healthy eating practices and opportunities to participate in exercise which cater for the diversity of assets in the portfolio, and that can be tailored for size and demographics.

In FY23, a pilot Wellness Hub program across QIC Real Estate’s asset portfolio will be implemented in conjunction with Nutrition Australia and YMCA to test and learn the type of in-centre activations that best resonate with our diverse local communities.  The Wellness Hub will deliver a range of activities designed to empower customers to make healthy lifestyle choices, including free body composition scans with personalised health plans, cooking demonstrations and nutritional shopping tours, yoga classes and mindfulness workshops. Customers will also have access to a virtual healthy community hub which provides free healthy eating and physical activity resources.

The Wellness Hub pilot constitutes the first step in a long-term strategic undertaking by QIC Real Estate to introduce the communities it serves to the benefits of healthy eating and exercise, and encourage an improvement in their overall physical health and wellbeing. Impact measurement will be integrated throughout to track the partnership and measure progress towards achieving our Theory of Change. We will measure program and participant outcomes via participation levels, surveys and engagement levels to assess improvements in knowledge and skills over time, and will also identify measures to better understand the commercial value of the program to our assets in terms of showcasing retailers and driving foot traffic across the portfolio. Learnings from the pilot will be used to roll out the program to all centres in future.

1Chronic health conditions experienced in Australia in 2017-18 were: mental and behavioural conditions, back problems, arthritis, asthma, diabetes mellitus, heart, stroke and vascular disease, osteoporosis, chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), cancer and kidney disease. Chronic conditions, 2017-18 financial year | Australian Bureau of Statistics (

FY22 community contributions

QIC Real Estate uses the Business for Societal Impact (B4SI) Framework2 to measure our community contributions. The B4SI Framework is a globally recognised best practice measurement standard that enables companies to understand the difference their contributions make to their business and society. FY22 was the second year QIC Real Estate has used the Business for Societal Impact (B4SI) Framework for our community reporting.

B4SI 2022 (1)  


In FY22, QIC Real Estate contributed over $1.2 million to its communities throughout the year, through a mix of cash, time, in-kind and management related inputs. This is an increase of 81% from FY21 due to our new community partnership with Nutrition Australia and YMCA, increased asset related community activity after the easing of COVID-19 restrictions, improved community data capture and an increase in management efforts across the portfolio to deliver community related initiatives. 

A further $932,300 was contributed to the community as a foregone revenue via the provision of space for community initiatives across the asset portfolio. This includes spaces provided at our assets that were either already vacant or dedicated spaces in our assets for community activities.

The majority of the spaces provided at our assets are used by community groups for fundraising activities. In the coming year we plan to implement a process to ensure we capture the amounts raised by these groups. This will enable QIC Real Estate to further understand the extent of our community contributions.

Community contributions FY21 v FY22 (1)

The chart below shows the breakdown of community contributions across cash, time, in-kind and management inputs. 

  • Cash contributions made up of direct financial contributions including product and gift card donations, accounted for the largest proportion of community contributions in FY22. The large increase in FY22 was primarily due to Real Estate’s new community investment program and the easing of COVID-19 restrictions enabling greater community activity across the portfolio. 
  • Management costs include marketing and operational costs in relation to community activities. Increases in FY22 were attributed to it being the first full year that the new Real Estate Sustainability team was in place, as well as a number of new community-related marketing initiatives being rolled out at centres across the portfolio.
  • In-kind contributions account for the basic costs to QIC to provide space within our assets for community initiatives. Last year this was reported under cash contributions hence the increase in FY22. 
  • Time is made up of paid volunteering undertaken by Real Estate staff. Last year some of the management costs were included in this category which is why there is a decrease in FY22. 

Community contribution types (1)

Contributions for the year were spread over a large number of different organisations supporting a variety of community focus areas locally at each centre. In FY22, the health category grew to be the largest contribution area across the portfolio, increasing to 32% compared to 12% in FY21. This was largely driven by our newly established partnership with Nutrition Australia and YMCA, and is in line with our objective to grow the proportion of contributions in the health category over time to align with Real Estate’s Community Investment Program social theme of ‘physical health and wellbeing’.

FY22 B4SI focus areas (1)

Note: Other includes community fundraising, sporting clubs, etc.

2Community contributions for FY22 have been verified by B4SI. QIC Real Estate is a member of B4SI and pays an annual fee. The B4SI Framework is a globally recognised best practice measurement standard that enables companies to understand the difference their contributions make to their business and society.

Reconciliation Action Plan

In November 2020, QIC launched its Innovate Reconciliation Action Plan (Innovate RAP). Our vision for reconciliation, as one of Australia's leading, trusted and specialised investment managers, is an Australia that embraces equal, fair and just opportunities for Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander peoples and actively supports reconciliation in our political, business and community structures.

QIC recognises the importance of building a better future for all Australians, which must pay respect to and build trust with Australia's First Nations Peoples. We are committed to partnering with Aboriginal and Torres Strait Islander people, businesses and communities to co-create meaningful investment outcomes and drive equal opportunities within our procurement, employment and investment activities.

To help with the achievement of QIC’s Innovate RAP, QIC Real Estate developed an Indigenous Delivery Plan for FY22 outlining the key areas of focus where our property assets and teams can make a real and positive difference towards achieving our broader RAP deliverables. The QIC Real Estate Indigenous Delivery Plan FY22 focused on opportunities to increase engagement and cultural awareness within our local communities as well as increasing procurement opportunities with Indigenous businesses, and included annual objectives specific to the real estate asset portfolio. 

The Plan is updated on an annual basis and acts as an important guide for centre teams in focusing their efforts on genuine initiatives that support reconciliation. An important part of our Indigenous Delivery Plan is to form genuine long-term relationships with our local Indigenous communities and leverage our shopping centres as places of welcome, cultural education and connection for the broader community. Initiatives delivered during FY22 included:

  • Centre teams connecting with their local Indigenous community groups to celebrate culturally significant days and identifying further areas where we can support and promote their activities
  • Entering into a partnership with Kinaway Aboriginal Chamber of Commerce in Victoria to investigate opportunities to align our procurement requirements with Indigenous owned businesses
  • Total spend of over $270,000 with Indigenous suppliers across QIC Real Estate nationally
  • Engagement of an Indigenous consultant to assist with the development of a framework document for Designing with Country for use across our development projects, which will be incorporated into our Sustainable Design Brief once complete
  • Commissioning of murals at centres by local Indigenous artists to act as prompts for storytelling and ongoing community education on local Indigenous culture. 


Woodgrove Mural

Mural at Woodgrove, VIC, painted by Indigenous artist Lee-Anne Clarke.

Engaging with our stakeholders

For QIC Real Estate, much of our work centres on relationships. Fostering positive, working associations with those who influence or are influenced by our assets is critical to our success.

We approach the way we engage with our stakeholders by seeking to view the work we do through their lens and understanding their needs and priorities throughout the lifecycle of our assets.

We undertake a thorough process of identifying and mapping stakeholders via a range of internal forums, which include a cross-section of personnel from within our business. These personnel may include (but are not limited to) senior management, fund managers, asset investment managers and analysts, centre management staff, stakeholder relations officers, marketing teams, and construction and operational contactors.

This process is particularly relevant for the delivery of development projects at our assets, where we undertake comprehensive planning to minimise impacts to our retail partners, customers and the local community during construction works.

Preparation for development projects routinely includes stakeholder engagement activities such as: briefings with local Council, other local government representatives and local media, one-on-one meetings as required between retailers and Centre Managers, informal retailer engagement events hosted by Centre Management throughout the project delivery, as well as a range of information disseminated to the community including newsletters, websites, social media and regular project bulletins.

These engagement activities aim to provide a range of opportunities for our identified stakeholders to access information and ask questions on topics relating to the development such as potential impacts and what is being done to minimise these, access changes, future plans, and detailed information about what is being delivered through the project works.

Stakeholder engagement 1 (1)

We engage with a wide range of stakeholder groups:

Stakeholder Groups
ESG 2022